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The sex offender registry is a local and national database where people convicted of certain sex offenses must register. Generally, these people must register each year to keep the information on the registry accurate. The sex offender registry is available to the public and provides personal information such as the offender’s name, address or partial address, and the crime he or she was convicted of.

If you have to register for the California sex offender registry, you may be wondering how this will impact your future prospects and how long you will need to stay registered. Our talented defense attorneys in Alameda County understand these concerns and could explain in detail what to expect and your options for relief.

National Versus Local Sex Offender Registry

The national sex offender registry includes all the registered sex offenders in the United States. The California sex offender registry is limited to local state offenders. If a person wanted information about sex offender registrants in their local area, they would visit the California Megan’s Law website to conduct a search by name or even address. Both registries are available for anybody to view and accessible online.

What Crimes Require Registration as a Sex Offender?

People in Alameda County must register as a sex offender if a criminal court finds them guilty of offenses involving sexual violence or exploitation of others. In most instances, this involves convictions for state criminal sex offenses but can also be triggered for a non-registration offense that a judge believes was committed for the purposes of sexual gratification. Common examples of state laws that require a person to register as a sex offender include:

  • Rapes
  • Kidnappings for purposes of committing a sex crime
  • Sexual abuse of children
  • Lewd or lascivious acts involving children that fall under the category of a felony
  • The production of sexually obscene matter (child pornography)
  • Human Trafficking
  • Indecent Exposure

Consulting with an attorney could assist people in determining if a criminal charge is likely to require them to register as a sex offender upon conviction.

A collection of federal criminal laws may also carry this registration requirement. In most cases, these are laws that closely mirror those that are relevant to the state’s criminal laws. For example, a conviction in a federal court of an incident involving child sex trafficking will require registration in the federal sex offender database. Even so, there can be key differences between the state and federal laws that require registration after a conviction. An attorney could provide more information about how the court that hears the case can impact potential future sex registration requirements.

How Long Does Someone Have to be Registered as a Sex Offender?

How long a person must remain registered as a sex offender depends on the exact crime he or she was convicted of. As of January 1, 2021, the sex offender registry has a three-tiered system that breaks down how long a person must be registered. Tier one is registration for a minimum of ten years, tier two is registration for a minimum of 20 years, and tier three is registration for life. An Alameda County lawyer could explain what tier someone registering as a sex offender would fall under based on his or her specific crime.

Getting Removed from the Registry

People convicted of certain sex offenses in Alameda County can fill out a form that is sent to the Department of Justice to apply for removal from the registry. These crimes include, but are not limited to, sexual battery under Penal Code §243.4 (a), misdemeanor child molestation under Penal Cord §647.6, and felony child pornography as long as the victim was at least 16 years of age or older.

Additionally, someone convicted of an offense that did not involve penetration or oral copulation, the victim of which a child, stepchild, grandchild, or sibling of the offender, and/or which the offender successfully completed or is successfully completing probation could apply for removal.

Petitioning for relief under the tiered system is not the only mechanism for getting removed from the registry.  Some individuals may seek removal from the registry by applying for a certificate of rehabilitation.  There are strict requirements for how to qualify for this type of relief and an experienced certificate of rehabilitation attorney who has removed individuals from the sex offender registry in the past can help identify eligibility based on the crime of conviction, residency requirements, and rehabilitation terms. If you or a loved one would like to seek potential relief from the requirement to register you can contact an attorney at The Nieves Law Firm to assess your eligibility and discuss your options.

Impact of Being Registered as a Sex Offender in Alameda County

Even if an Alameda County resident is not required to register as a sex offender for life, it could still have a significant impact on their personal and professional life. When people hear that somebody is a sex offender, they do not wonder what the charge was, or what the facts were, and if the person was properly convicted or pled to it. There is a social stigma attached to this registration.

Some employers require disclosures and background checks. If somebody fails to disclose that he or she is a registered sex offender, he or she might be terminated for non-disclosure.

Sex offender registration could also affect a person’s living situation. If somebody is low income, he or she might have to disclose his or her criminal records to an apartment building or landlord and, with certain convictions, he or she would not be able to live there. Sex offenders could also be prevented from living near a school, park, or somewhere else children congregate.

Discuss Sex Offender Registry with an Alameda County Attorney

A conviction for an offence that requires you to register as a sex offender will have a profound impact on every part of your life. In addition to jail time and fines, the requirement to register as a sex offender places heavy penalties on a person long after their sentence and supervision ends.

Participating in an open conversation with a criminal lawyer could help you to make strategic plans for the future concerning your exposure to requirements to register with the sex offender registry. This includes promoting an effective defense against the charges where a conviction requires registration as well as taking steps to ensure that you follow the rules related to continued contact with the relevant government authorities. Reach out to us now to discover more.

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